In our attempt to properly educate our daughter about the foundations of nerd culture, Back to the Future seemed pretty necessary. And it worked to good effect – she stayed interested, and appreciated the jokes. One thing that had not sunk in with me about the movie – how much it keeps moving! It barely stops for a moment, and tries to tell a slightly complicated story, almost never stopping to recap, which makes it an impressive piece of storytelling. When I advise my students to create “impossible” situations for their characters (novice storytellers never want to create these situations because they can’t see a way out), I think I’ll show the five minutes leading up to the climax, where it seems like there is no conceivable way for Doc Brown to get everything hooked up properly.
One thing that really startled me – I watched the “deleted scenes” – had those been included, it would have been a very different movie! In them, Doc Brown is lecherous and foul-mouthed, the neighborhood cop takes a bribe, and Marty’s Mom cheats on a test for no obvious dramatic reason. They were wise to cut all that, it would have made the film seem grubby. Although, I always had wondered how Doc Brown got rid of the cop… now I wish I didn’t know!